File on Four - Taxing Situations File on Four - Taxing Situations
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  1. #1

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    Default File on Four - Taxing Situations

    Recently heard this and all about the Loan Charge and the Agents promoting schemes esp the Knox Group.


    BBC Radio 4 - File on 4, Taxing Situations

  2. #2

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    It was a decent enough attempt and I felt in particular for the young lady who lost her father and the guy who has yet to tell his wife and family of his predicament.

    They had more integrity about their situation than the rather weak denials of the named Mr Barrowman and the misleading and disingenuous answers from the Treasury puppet, Mr Norman.

    If this situation could be solved by weighing the fairness of each other's position, there is no question that the promoters, HMRC, Government and HM Treasury in particular would be found lacking.

    So the program portrayed the taxpayers as being unfairly treated.

    Great- and the answer to that is ......

    And this is the problem.

    We have tried the political and Parliamentary route to resolution and the hard truth is that Treasury is just too powerful and holds itself above the usual checks and balances built into our political system.

    An APPG cannot force them to change their mind, nor the HoL and they have the power to prevent or interfere with "independent" enquiries. Treasury is like a violent man in search of money and HMRC is a violent man's dog, willing to bite everything in its path. Government is happy to let them create deep and lasting wounds without restraint.

    Litigation against the loan charge is possible but does not solve the problem of the original liability. We and many others are of the view that the liability belongs to employers and promoters. HMRC cannot allow that because they KNEW who these people were and allowed them to walk away. Too politically damaging now to admit that. Previous CEO's might even have to hand back the gong they earned for allowing this situation to arise.

    Litigation against the original liability continues but is fragmented and driven by the motives and wants of different taxpayers and their advisers. Whilst there are of course common themes, we are now too late to create one definitive case. It may well be that given the number of schemes (at least 150) and the period (20 years), such a definitive case is not practical.

    HMRC know that divide and conquer is their best bet here. Litigation groups are notoriously difficult to keep together and if delays are created and costs incurred whilst demands continue, people will just give in to crushing pressure.

    The court of public opinion has woken up of course but I fear is too late and HMRC will always brief their puppet in Parliament to run the "everybody has to pay a fair share" argument. An argument not in the legislation and one that I would say is false. Everybody has to pay waht is legally due. If Parliament has the power to make law and wants everybody to pay the same, that could be done in a page and a half of A4. Doesn't need 25,000 and counting pages.

    So where do we go?

    In our view, the only hope is Supreme Court and that is where we're going.
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